Once you learn how to make overnight oats, the second half of your life begins. Cold oats may not always seem appealing, but an easy breakfast that is ready to eat when you wake up is. The best part? (you can warm them up).
While I enjoy a bowl of hot oatmeal now and again, a cold bowl of creamy oatmeal is a lot more delicious than I ever could have realized, especially when it's already 80 degrees F by morning (gotta love Florida summers).
This recipe is super simple and easy to make. It also makes large sized portions. You'll be feeling fuller longer and feel great about eating this oatmeal recipe !
There are so may creative variations to overnight oats like Peanut Butter Banana Overnight Oats, Chunky Monkey Overnight Oats, and Strawberries and Cream Overnight Oats. Once you have the basics down, you can adapt, change, and modify your oats however you like!
🍯 Why This Recipe Works
- A superior choice. These overnight oats are genuinely delightful, offering natural flavors, protein, fiber, and more. It's a breakfast that you can enjoy guilt-free.
- They're flavorful. Overnight oats can be incredibly versatile and made to taste like whatever you want! Add peanut butter, fresh fruits, etc, and create a bowl that's as appealing to look at as it is to eat.
- They're great for meal prepping! Make enough to last the week and wake up to breakfast already made.
Old fashioned oats- This is the base of the recipe. These oats will soak up liquid overnight to soften without the need to cook them.
Greek yogurt- Adding Greek yogurt will make the oatmeal thicker and creamier.
Toppings of choice- You can add anything from fresh berries to nut butters, actual nuts and seeds, chocolate chips or cinnamon. There's no limit to what you can add as a topping!
For specific ingredients and measurements, please see the recipe card below.
Oats. I have had great success using old fashioned oats and steel cut oats as well as quick cook steel cut oats (the kind that are chopped into smaller pieces). The difference in texture is pretty minimal.
Milk. You can use whole milk, low fat milk, almond milk, coconut milk or any other milk of choice. Even water or coffee creamer can work well in a pinch.
Sweetener. Sweetener options include honey and maple syrup but you can also choose to use agave or a low-carb liquid sugar substitute.
Yogurt. You can use any plain or flavored yogurt of choice. Our go-to is Greek Yogurt, but regular yogurts can be used too. We really enjoy Honey flavored Greek yogurt (it's our favorite).
Different variations for this recipe can be made at any point in the recipe. Adding in a scoop of peanut butter, a tablespoon of chocolate chips, some chopped fresh fruit, or other add-ins can be a great way to make your oats more unique.
I like to make a batch of plain oats and then flavor them in the morning before eating, so I can adjust the flavor to whatever I feel like eating.
🔪 Instructions for How to Make Overnight Oats
Step 1: In a large mixing bowl, add the milk, yogurt, vanilla, and maple syrup.
Step 2: Whisk together until smooth.
Step 3: Add the salt and chia seeds (if using).
Step 4: Whisk well to combine.
Step 5: Add in the oats.
Step 6: Stir until combined.
Step 7: Add in any of your desired add-ins.
Step 8: Divide the mixture into 2 8-ounce containers with fitted lids.
Step 9: Let rest for 6 or more hours (overnight is best, but you can do up to 5 days if meal prepping).
Step 10: In the morning, adjust the consistency by adding in more milk until thinned to your liking, or enjoy it thick as-is. Top with any toppings of choice and enjoy!
🍴 Recipe Tips
You can warm your oats
If desired, you can heat your overnight oatmeal in a microwave safe bowl in the morning for about 1-2 minutes. While overnight oats are traditionally enjoyed chilled, they are just as tasty (if not more so) when warmed!
Chia seeds are optional
Adding chia seeds is optional but can be a great way to get additional benefits from your meal.
Chia seeds will absorb some of the liquid in the oats, so in the morning they will be pretty thick. You can thin down your oats to your desired consistency by stirring in additional milk.
Your overnight oats are good for 5 days in the fridge so if desired, you can meal prep for the week on Sunday and not have to worry about breakfast again until Saturday.
⏲️Make Ahead Instructions
You can eat your oats right after they've been mixed together, but the oats will be chewy. Letting them sit for at least 4 to 6 hours is ideal for a better texture and consistency as it will take several hours for the oats to absorb the liquid in the oats.
💭 Recipe FAQs
While rolled oats are the most common choice for overnight oats due to their quick absorption, you can use steel-cut oats if you prefer a heartier texture. However, they may require a longer soaking time and may not become as creamy as rolled oats.
You can consume your oats immediately after mixing, but they will have a chewy texture. For improved consistency and texture, it's best to allow them to rest for a minimum of 4 to 6 hours, although I often find myself waiting as little as 30 minutes. An extended resting time allows the oats to fully absorb the liquid and achieve their desired consistency.
Assuming you have all of the ingredients already, prepping the oats actually only takes about 2-5 minutes. Measure, whisk, pour into containers, and chill. You'll need about 6 hours of patience as you wait for the oats to be ready to eat though.
❤️ More Delicious Breakfast Recipes
If you tried this How to Make Overnight Oats, please leave a ⭐️ star rating and share your feedback in the 📝 comments section below. I would truly appreciate it!
How to Make Overnight Oats
- ½ cup Milk ($0.10)
- 1 cup Greek yogurt ($0.64)
- 2-4 Tablespoons Maple syrup or honey ($0.08)
- 1 teaspoon Chia seeds *optional ($0.03)
- 1 teaspoon Vanilla extract *optional ($0.03)
- ¼ teaspoon Salt ($0.01)
- 1 ½ cup Old fashioned rolled oats ($0.18)
- 1-2 Tablespoons Toppings of choice *optional
- ¼ cup Fresh berries
- 1 Tablespoon Nut butter
- 1-2 Tablespoons Chocolate chips
- ½ teaspoon Ground cinnamon
- In a bowl whisk together milk, yogurt, vanilla, maple syrup until mixed.
- Whisk in chia seeds and salt if using.
- Stir in oats until combined.
- Add in any of your desired add-ins.
- Divide the mixture into 2 8-ounce containers with fitted lids.
- Let rest for 6 or more hours (overnight is best but you can do up to 5 days if meal prepping).
- In the morning, adjust the consistency by adding in more milk until thinned to your liking, or enjoy it thick as-is. Top with any toppings of choice and enjoy!